Prince Harry says he rowed with Prince William over his BEARD
Prince Harry says he rowed with Prince William over whether he could keep his BEARD when he married Meghan – and whether they could wed in Westminster Abbey or even elope to Botswana
- The book alleged that William was ‘livid’ when Harry kept his beard for the event
- It was also claimed that William said St Paul’s was ‘too grand’ for Harry’s wedding
- Kensington Palace declined to comment on the claims made in his book
Rows with Prince William dogged the weeks leading up to Harry’s wedding, the Duke of Sussex claims in his memoir.
They even clashed over whether he could keep his beard.
Discussions about the venue and the date also became causes of concern at the Palace.
Harry suggests he and Meghan had even wanted to elope for a ‘barefoot Botswana’ ceremony, adding: ‘We wanted to get married quickly. But the Palace couldn’t seem to pick a date. Or a venue.’
In his book Spare, Harry said: ‘We wanted to get married quickly. But the Palace couldn’t seem to pick a date. Or a venue’
After returning from an ‘engagement tour’, for which Meghan and Harry travelled to the four home nations, he says he discussed plans with his brother William.
Harry told William that he and Meghan were thinking of one of the grander venues in London.
Describing the exchange, he writes: ‘I told him we were thinking of Westminster Abbey.’
‘No good. We did it there.’
‘Right, right. St Paul’s?’
‘Too grand. Plus Pa and Mummy did it there.’
‘Hm. Yes. Good point. He suggested Tetbury. I snorted. Tetbury? The chapel near Highgrove? Seriously, Willy? How many does that place seat?’
Prince and Princess of Wales got married on April 29 in 2011 at Westminster Abbey
It was alleged that the Prince of Wales said St Paul’s was ‘too grand’ to host the wedding of Harry and Meghan
‘Isn’t that what you said you wanted – a small, quiet wedding?’
Harry claims that what he and Meghan really wanted was to escape Britain altogether, adding: ‘In fact we wanted to elope. Barefoot in Botswana, with maybe a friend officiating, that was our dream. But we were expected to share this moment with other people. It wasn’t up to us.’
Palace insiders, however, have dismissed the claims, saying that the decisions around the wedding, including which family members to invite, were down to the couple.
In his book Harry goes on to say: ‘They finally accepted our request for the location – St George’s Chapel.’
When a date was set for May 19, 2018, there was yet another hurdle for the groom.
‘After all the stress of asking Granny for permission to marry Meg, I thought I’d never have the courage to ask her for anything else.
‘And yet I now dared to make another ask – Granny, please, may I, for my wedding, keep my beard?
When Harry said he had already been granted permission by their grandmother to keep the facial hair for the event, William ‘became livid’, it was claimed
‘Not a small ask either. A beard was thought by some to be a clear violation of protocol and long-standing norms, especially since I was getting married in my Army uniform. Beards were forbidden in the British Army.’
In the memoir, ghost-written by Pulitzer Prize-winning author J.R. Moehringer, Harry philosophises about whether his beard was ‘Freudian – beard as security blanket’ or ‘Jungian – beard as mask’.
Regardless, he says that the beard made him feel ‘calmer’ and the Queen understood.
‘Yes, she said, you may keep your beard. But then I explained it to my brother and he… bristled?
‘Not the done thing, he said. Military rules, so forth.’
Harry said he gave his older brother ‘a quick history lesson’ with the help of Google – showing William images of Royal ancestors who were bearded and uniformed, such as Edward VII and George V.
Harry adds that William ‘wouldn’t let it go’ and that the argument surrounding facial hair continued ‘in person, on the phone, for more than a week’
When Harry said he had already been granted permission by their grandmother to keep the facial hair, William ‘became livid’.
Harry reports his brother saying: ‘You put her in an uncomfortable position, Harold! She had no choice but to say yes.’
Harry adds that William ‘wouldn’t let it go’ and that the argument continued ‘in person, on the phone, for more than a week’.
It culminated, according to Harry, with William ordering him to shave his beard off.
Harry says he replied: ‘For the love of God, Willy, why does this matter so much to you?’
‘Because I wasn’t allowed to keep my beard.’
Harry concludes: ‘Ah, there it was. After he’d come back from an assignment with Special Forces, Willy was sporting a full beard, and someone told him to be a good boy, run along and shave it. He hated the idea of me enjoying a perk he’d been denied.’
Kensington Palace declined to comment.
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